Activity in mortgage fraud cases edged up during the first quarter, but actions still were considered low compared to standards established since the financial crisis, Mortgage Daily reported June 17.
The national Mortgage Fraud Index hit 880 during the first quarter, up 16 percent from the fourth quarter of 2012. The index reflects prosecution activity in cases where defendants are accused of deceiving mortgage lenders and is determined by both the number of cases and the dollar amount of each case, Mortgage Daily reported. The cumulative total for all state indices equals the national index.
First-quarter activity was tracked on 125 mortgage fraud cases, which increased 19 percent from the previous quarter’s case count, but dropped 27 percent from a year ago, Mortgage Daily reported.
The dollar amount of home loans involved in first-quarter fraud activity was $1.4 billion, up $157 million from the fourth quarter of 2012. Total dollar volume dropped by $339 million when compared to a year ago.
Based on the dollar amount of mortgages involved, Pennsylvania's nearly $226 million was the highest of all states. California came in second with nearly $224 million. The top five also included Florida ($197 million), Nevada ($138 million) and New York ($100 million).
California saw the highest fraud index at the state level with 107. Florida's index came in second at 93, followed by New Jersey (67), Ohio (63) and Pennsylvania (60).